by Black Bubblegum

Nas @ Rock The Bells 2008 in Jones Beach (more by villageslum.com)
Nas

OK, so it's not as much a big bang as last year (A Tribe Called Quest reunion) or the one before (Rage Against The Machine reunion), but Rock The Bells 2009 does have some interesting artists on the lineup. Besides a welcome reunion (Reflection Eternal) (Talib Kweli & Hi-Tek), one suspect one (House of Pain) and some great repeat offenders (Nas, RZA, Raekwon, MOP, Sage Francis, Slum Village), this year's Rock The Bells also boasts an Outkast (Big Boi), a windy city fave (Common), and a true sicko (Necro). The full lineup is:

Rock The Bells

Rock the Bells 2009 lineup
Nas & Damian "Jr Gong" Marley
The Roots
Common
Big Boi
KRS-One
House of Pain featuring La Coka Nostra
Reflection Eternal
Tech N9ne
K'Naan
RZA
Raekwon
Sage Francis
MOP
Slaughterhouse
Eyedea & Abilities
Necro
Slum Village
Evidence & Alchemist
Chali 2na
Psycho Realm
Mystic Journeyman
Buckshot
Mickey Factz
B. Dolan
Tabi Bonney

Hosted by KRS-One, Super Natural, MURS, & Pete Rock

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Dates haven't been released, but the lucky cities are Chicago, Toronto, DC, LA, Boston, NYC, Denver, San Francisco, Miami, and Vancouver. No word as to what city gets which artist.

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The Roots have played quite a few shows in NYC lately, and have tickets left for a their upcoming Highline Ballroom shows through the end of June. The Philly crew is also playing Osheaga.

Big Boi made an appearance at SXSW and has a solo album coming out.

Nas & Damian Marley recently announced that they would collaborate on an album called Distant Relative. The duo collaborated on Marley's "Road To Zion", the follow-up single to the maaaaassssive reggae anthem and Grammy winner "Welcome To Jamrock". Distant Relatives is due in June. The pair are also playing Camp Bisco.

Damian Marley & Nas - "Road To Zion"